Has the ceremonial first pitch completely lost its meaning at the minor league level ? After seeing 11 "first pitches" thrown at Somerset this past Saturday night, you really have to wonder. According to Wikipedia, the first pitch is "usually thrown by either a celebrity or a locally significant person." Is some random kid throwing out the first pitch on behalf of a corporate sponsor a "significant" person ? Not to take anything away from the kids (because I'm sure it's quite a thrill for them), but what's the point of having so many first pitches other than to get the sponsors' names out there one more time. I suppose this is just another example of corporate America taking over the world of minor league baseball.
Also, not to sound like a curmudgeon, but why does every kid in attendance now feel like it's their right to get a foul ball ? What exactly do kids so with the balls once they get them home ? My guess is that they just end up in their closet, never to be looked at again. When I was a kid (which wasn't that long ago), adults were never obligated to give foul balls to the closest kid. And players would rarely hand a ball to a kid. I'm all for kids getting foul balls, but just wish they had more appreciation for them and didn't assume it was their automatic right to go home with one.